Islip, NY: Long Island’s Corridor Of Growth

Islip has a bustling airport, a busy foreign trade zone next door and an attractive location in the middle of Long Island’s largest industrial corridor.

By the BF Staff
From the March/April 2019 Issue

The Town of Islip has long been known as a leader of economic development in New York. Islip boasts the largest industrial corridor in the Long Island region, major infrastructure advantages over surrounding areas, and an Industrial Development Agency (IDA) that has won renown for its continuous ability to attract new businesses. Though Islip faces many of the same challenges as other municipalities, the Town is uniquely suited for economic growth and expansion.

Islip, Long Island, NY
MacArthur Airport is serviced by Southwest, American and Frontier Airlines. The airport is located in the Town of Islip and adjacent to FTZ #52. (Photo: GoogleMaps/Matthew Castro; Wikiwand)

One of the prime reasons for Islip’s attractiveness to local, national, and international businesses is the proximity these businesses have to Long Island—MacArthur Airport (LIMA), which the Federal Aviation Administration has defined as being on-par with LaGuardia Airport and John F. Kennedy Airport. Having a nationally recognized airport within Islip Town helps our local companies conduct their business more effectively and efficiently. Just as MacArthur Airport helps local businesses expand, the airport itself is working to grow its presence to handle the economic demands of the future. LIMA is serviced by Southwest, American and Frontier Airlines.

Just next door to Long Island MacArthur Airport is our Foreign Trade Zone (FTZ). Foreign Trade Zone #52 was created to help businesses with an international scope grow and thrive here in Islip. These companies can utilize the FTZ’s singular economic status to avoid costs associated with importing and exporting goods with other countries. The FTZ sits at the intersection of a crucial transportation hub that features railways, highways, and our commercial airport and is no stranger to new development. AA Technology Inc., a growing manufacturer and distributor of circuit boards and electrical components, decided to expand in the FTZ and construct its own 36,000-square-foot facility. Because of their strategic location and investment, AA Technology Inc. will enjoy incentives offered by the FTZ and the Islip Industrial Development Agency.

The Town of Islip has a proud tradition of business success, across a variety of industries. But special mention must be made toward three critical industries that have thrived within our town: technology, food distribution and pharmaceuticals. Many technology companies, spanning sectors from aerospace to telecommunications, have found a home in Islip. All-System Aerospace, a warehouse distributor of helicopter and aircraft parts, has expanded within Islip and leased a larger building that allows them to keep up with market demand. They have remained in Islip largely because our IDA was able to help them adapt and expand to ensure that business was uninterrupted.

CPI Aero, a company that manufactures aircraft components, primarily for the U.S. military, was able to expand their operations to a new facility, and also did so with the help of the Islip IDA. Similar to CPI Aero, Sartorius Stedim North America also expanded their operations into a new facility, occupying an additional 40,000 square feet in Bohemia NY. Sartorius is a leading provider of cutting-edge equipment and services for the biopharmaceutical industry and has invested over $2 million in the build-out and purchase of equipment for a new R&D lab. With the assistance of the Town of Islip IDA, Sartorius hopes to open its new North American Headquarters building in the latter part of 2019 adjacent to its research lab. Collins Aerospace (formerly Rockwell Collins), a leading manufacturer of high performance lighting systems for both commercial and business jet aircraft, expanded into a 60,000-square-foot facility in Bohemia.

In addition to a $1 million investment in equipment, Rockwell Collins also created an additional 30 jobs within two years. In addition, in 2017, East West Industries, a family owned manufacturer of aircraft seating, life support equipment and ground support equipment, mostly for military customers, moved their entire operations to a new 48,000-square-foot facility in Ronkonkoma, investing over $2.5 Million in new equipment and adding over 20 jobs to their existing 60.

Additionally, Islip welcomed Ascent Pharmaceuticals in 2012, a pharmaceutical manufacturer whose operations involve research, development and the manufacture, warehousing, distribution of generic prescription medicines in a wide range of therapeutic areas. With the assistance of the Islip IDA, the company, owned by InvaGen Pharmaceuticals, purchased and renovated an existing 250,000-square-foot facility for $20 million and invested another $19 million in additional equipment and research. In return for financial assistance, Ascent hired 100 new employees immediately, and added another 150 over five years, bringing their total up to 350. Additionally in 2019, Ascent Pharmaceuticals opened two more facilities, across the street from their first project, totaling 340,000 square feet of manufacturing and bottling space that will add 120 new jobs when fully operational. The story of Ascent Pharmaceuticals is another excellent example of how a company can grow and thrive in Islip, a community that understands the dedication and commitment necessary for projects like this to come to fruition.

Islip, Long Island, NY
Sysco Inc., the world’s largest food distributor, constructed a 420,000-square-foot facility in Central Islip. (Photo: Hoosier Energy)

Most notably, the world’s largest food distributor, Sysco Inc., constructed a 420,000-square-foot facility in Central Islip. Throughout the entire construction process, from planning, to building, to staffing, Sysco and the Town of Islip worked together to address the needs of both the company and the community. The facility has been fully operational since the summer of 2012, and the demands of the facility have already created over 250 jobs with more to come. Throughout the entire recruitment process, SYSCO has placed a special focus on hiring from within the community. The distribution center boasts many unique features, including a state-of-the-art hydrogen fuel station to power all of the forklifts in the facility. This project has been a model for how local governments, civic groups, and businesses can work together and be proud of the finished product, which will keep all parties satisfied for years to come.

Through all of these developments, the Islip IDA has continuously demonstrated its ability to work with businesses to build partnerships between government, businesses, and residents. As a result of its many accomplishments, the Islip IDA has been named the Suffolk County IDA of the Year four times by the editorial staff of the Long Island Business News. Islip Town will always be committed to exploring new ways to bring jobs and opportunities to Islip, without losing our identity as a community. For information on how your business can grow in Islip, please visit